The Aurora Shooting came right around my birthday and I will be forever changed from the violence I saw. I wrote the proceeding during that time and posted it to Facebook. In the several weeks that passed nothing was really said or done and it has made me even more angry. We can’t talk about Gun Control because the NRA says that talking about guns in the wake of a tragedy is political manipulation, even if the victims themselves and their families WANT to talk about it. So by that rationale, we have not had a MAJOR shooting recently, even though thousands have died since Newtown that the media doesn’t care about, so how about we talk about it now?
A year ago, at a midnight screening, a crazed person purchased a ticket to a film at the Century 16 Multiplex in Aurora, Colorado. He left through the emergency exit, propped it open, went to his car and reentered the premises dressed with a gas mask, a load-bearing vest, a ballistic helmet, bullet-resistant leggings, a bullet-resistant throat protector, a groin protector and tactical gloves. His hair was died reddish-orange and he looked like many of the movie-goers who came to the audience in costume. The people inside Theater 8 were watching The Dark Knight Rises and many thought James Eagan Holmes was just a publicity stunt for the movie.
He launched several gas canisters into the crowded theater and revealed his weapons: a 12-gauge Remington 870 Tactical shotgun, a Smith & Wesson M&P 15 semi-automatic rifle with a 100-round drum magazine, and a Glock 22 40-caliber handgun. As the smoke irritated the crowd’s eyes, Holmes fired his shotgun at the ceiling than at the crowd. Then he turned the semi-automatic towards them. He fired repeatedly, injuring and killing as many as he could until the 100-round drum malfunctioned at the near 45 mark. The fire alarm went off. A voice came over the loudspeaker telling the audience to evacuate. People were scrambling to leave the theater but someone yelled that there was someone shooting in the lobby. Holmes continued to fire into the crowd with everything he had. His handgun came last and he fired it into them until it jammed.
The death toll was astonishing. Holmes surrendered as if it was planned. The horror of the bloodshed shocked the nation. Many called for an end to the recent relaxing of gun laws or preventing internet purchases of military hardware. I was hopeful that something would finally change.
It was my birthday so I went and saw Dark Knight Rises anyway, because I wasn’t afraid of the gun nuts or their fear. I figured, however, completely wrong, that Congress would enact laws to stop people from buying the weapons of war, at least over the Internet as the murderer in Aurora did. Yet with the Tea Baggers in Congress and other Republicans that are essentially owned by the big Gun lobby to the point that they have no soul, or common sense, NOTHING HAS BEEN DONE TO HONOR THESE PEOPLE NATIONALLY! Not a Goddamned thing!
Shame on the Republicans in the House and in the Senate and shame on the handful of Democrats too that have no balls to standup to the NRA. This has as much to do with freedom as it does with buying a bottle of vodka on a Sunday morning and you know what? You sure as hell can’t do that in many of these Big Gun states in the Bible Belt at all and you have to go to a big Gov’ment owned store to get it all in MANY cases. Yet arming myself for no apparent reason is always there. Do you feel more free with your toys? Or should I ask do you feel more free when the lunatic next door has way too many toys that can kill YOU? Because I sure don’t feel more free when I know a bunch of anti-government children are armed to the teeth, “just in case” they need to water the tree of liberty with blood.
So is this watering the tree of Liberty? Or is this a despicable and pointless act of violence that should shame us all in to sensible restrictions on weapons of war? The Second Amendment is the only Amendment with restrictions on it (it grants the right to bare arms in a well regulated militia, yes it actually says “well regulated” in the Constitution) and yet somehow these far-right lunatics think it is the only Amendment that shouldn’t have restrictions on it at all!
This is lunacy!
Colorado acted on its own and passed the most sweeping gun reform in the nation, yet the NRA has now gone after them, trying to recall the Governor and 4 crucial state legislators. They failed, yet managed to put two on a costly recall ballot. What kind of a world do we live in when the NRA can start ordering up elections!
I opposed gun legislation in the 90s but I was a “libertarian” teen, as many children are, and in those days you couldn’t buy an AR-15, body armor or specially made bullets for war period, let alone OVER THE INTERNET, as this wacko did in Aurora. Would it have stopped him if he could only buy a hand gun and conventional bullets? No. Though we would be honoring the annual passing of a much smaller amount of people.
This is freedom at the end of a gun barrel and I have my suspicions of what Jefferson, Franklin, Washington, Madison and Adams would think about that.